Monthly Archives: January 2011

2011 The Year of the Voluntourist?

By | Uncategorized | No Comments

I have read so many recent blog pieces, news stories etc. that highlight voluntourism as one of the hot trends for 2011.

For example:

The Center for American Progress named voluntourism as a top “green trend” for 2011

and The Travel Word recently highlighted voluntourism as one of many terms for ethical travel

and International Tourism Trade Fairs Association in the UK recently highlighted Voluntourism as a growing field.

The term “voluntourism”  is definitely getting out more and more in print but will this year really be the year of the voluntourist?

Voluntourism, of course has been around for a long time and had seen incredible growth in the last 10 years, though the experience  may have been called international volunteering or volunteering abroad. When the recession hit there was a dip in that growth but as the economy continues to recover I think we will continue to see a trend of increased attention, interest and opportunities to volunteer abroad and be a voluntouist.

What do you think, is 2011 the year?

MLK Day – Quotes and Inspiration

By | Genevieve Brown, IVPA Executive Director | No Comments

“An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

On MLK day I think of all those who not only wish for a better world, one where people are not marginalized, victimized and cast out of society, but who go out and do something.  What are we going to do make our mark, to help those in need, and come together as a global community?

“Every man must decide whether he will walk in the light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

International Opportunities for Mature Volunteers

By | IVPA Members, Tips for Volunteering Abroad | No Comments

When you hear about people going abroad to volunteer you might imagine a 20-something-year-old taking a semester or summer to give service. Statistically young people (15-24 year old) are more likely to volunteer but people 55 years old or older are also a significant portion of volunteers that go abroad.

Mature volunteers have a lot to contribute. A lifetime of experience and knowledge and a desire to give back make older travelers committed voluntourists.

So what opportunities are there for more mature volunteers? There are so many opportunities it is helpful to narrow down your interests before beginning your search.

Is there a certain type of service that interests you?

For example:

What about certain countries you would like to travel to?

Some organizations, like Amigos de las Americas focus on a specific geographic region but many organization have locations throughout the world. Cross Cultural SolutionsProjects Abroad and ProWorld all offer a variety of service opportunities in Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America.

How long would you like to be away?

There are a range of option for length of stay from one week to a year or more.

Globe Aware is an organization that offers 1-week programs perfect for looking for a volunteer vacation. Many organization have a range for option and can also customize opportunities to fit your needs.